Boris Johnson hits back at Taliban over Afghanistan demands

By Kieran Doody

UK Trending Editor

Boris Johnson hits back at Taliban over Afghanistan demands

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Boris Johnson has said leaders from the G7 industrialised group of nations have agreed on a “road map” for engaging with the Taliban following their takeover of Afghanistan.

Earlier today, Taliban spokesman Zabihullah Mujahid has said no evacuations from Afghanistan will be permitted after the August 31 deadline.

During a press conference in Kabul, he said: “August 31 is the time given and after that it’s something that is against the agreement.

“All people should be removed prior to that date.

“After that we do not allow them, it will not be allowed in our country, we will take a different stance.”

Boris Johnson's response to Taliban

Boris Johnson has responded by saying the Taliban must agree to safe passage for those wanting to leave Afghanistan beyond August 31.

He told broadcasters after the meeting: “What we have done today at the G7 is we have got together the leading Western powers and agreed not just a joint approach to dealing with the evacuation, but also a road map for the way in which we’re going to engage with the Taliban, as it probably will be a Taliban government in Kabul.

“The number one condition we’re setting as G7 is that they have got to guarantee, right the way through, through August 31 and beyond, safe passage for those who want to come out.

“Some will say that they don’t accept that and some, I hope, will see the sense of that, because the G7 has very considerable leverage – economic, diplomatic and political.”

In a joint statement released by Downing Street, G7 leaders have affirmed their commitment to Afghanistan, including “through a renewed humanitarian effort by the international community”.

G7 issue statement on Afghanistan

The leaders’ statement said they support the UN in coordinating the immediate international humanitarian response in the region.

They said: “We affirm our enduring commitment to the people of Afghanistan, including through a renewed humanitarian effort by the international community.

“To this end we support the UN in coordinating the immediate international humanitarian response in the region, including unfettered humanitarian access in Afghanistan, and will contribute collectively to that response.

“As part of that, we will cooperate together and with neighbouring and other countries in the region on supporting Afghan refugees and host communities as part of a coordinated long-term regional response.

“We call on all partners of Afghanistan to support this effort and wider regional stability through multilateral channels.”

The statement went on to say that the legitimacy of any future government in Afghanistan depends on the approach the Taliban takes to uphold international obligations and ensure a stable Afghanistan.

They said: “Any future Afghan government must adhere to Afghanistan’s international obligations and commitment to protect against terrorism; safeguard the human rights of all Afghans, particularly women, children, and ethnic and religious minorities; uphold the rule of law; allow unhindered and unconditional humanitarian access; and counter human and drug trafficking effectively.

“We call on all parties in Afghanistan to work in good faith to establish an inclusive and representative government, including with the meaningful participation of women and minority groups.”

They added: “We will work together, and with our allies and regional countries, through the UN, G20 and more widely, to bring the international community together to address the critical questions facing Afghanistan. As we do this, we will judge the Afghan parties by their actions, not words.

“In particular, we reaffirm that the Taliban will be held accountable for their actions on preventing terrorism, on human rights in particular those of women, girls and minorities and on pursuing an inclusive political settlement in Afghanistan.

“The legitimacy of any future government depends on the approach it now takes to uphold its international obligations and commitments to ensure a stable Afghanistan.”